MAGAM - Curriculum

Master of Arts in
Global Affairs & Management

The Master of Arts in Global Affairs Management is designed to provide you with the political, economic and cultural training to thrive in international affairs and global relations. The MA in Global Affairs Management features coursework in international relations, political economy and area studies taught by world-class multinational faculty members. The curriculum also includes accounting, finance, marketing, management and entrepreneurship – all from a global perspective – with a breadth of additional global affairs electives for specialization.  This program is 45 credit hours including 33 core courses and 12 hours of electives.


Core Courses (33 credit hours):

Global Theory

Global Institutions & Actors

Global Decision Making under Uncertainty

The Individual as Decision Maker in Global Contexts

Global Political Economy

Managing People from a Global Perspective

Global Accounting

Global Marketing

Global Finance

Cross Cultural Communications

Global Strategy (Capstone Course)

Electives (12 credit hours)

Social Entrepreneurship

Community and Social Innovations

International Nongovernmental Organizations

Diversity, Ethics & Leading Public Change

Preparation for the Global Field Project

Thunderbird Experiential Practicum

Up to 6 hours of language

Course Descriptions

This module focuses on two aspects of accounting – financial and managerial accounting. Financial accounting is about how outsiders view and evaluate an organization such as a business, a not-for-profit entity, or a governmental operation. It focuses on how economic events are reflected in a firm’s financial statements including a balance sheet, an income statement and a statement of cash flows. It also focuses on how financial statement information is used by various stakeholders such as shareholders, creditors, employees and customers in making decisions with regard to the firm, including credit decisions and/or valuing a firm’s equity securities. The course also focuses on the key accounting methods that impact a company’s financial statements. Management may have incentives to engage in earnings management to improve the firm’s reported financial performance, and thereby, artificially increase the firm’s equity value and/or reduce the firm’s perceived credit risk. Accounting analysis – often called quality of earnings analysis – attempts to detect and “undo” management’s distortions so that the accounting numbers better reflect the underlying economic reality of the accounting events. The accounting analysis is conducted on the major asset, liability and stockholders’ equity categories. In addition, the course discusses the use of financial statement and other information in estimating the value of a company’s equity securities. Throughout the course we will examine the annual reports of global companies to illustrate accounting analysis and equity valuation. Prerequisite: None

This course will equip students with the tools necessary to make strategic financing and investment decisions for value creation in a competitive global environment. This course covers traditional topics such as financial analysis and projections, working capital management, and investment management (derivation of cash flows, cost of capital, discounted cash flow valuation, and capital budgeting decisions). Through case studies on multinational corporations students develop a framework for operating in the global financial environment. Drawing from theories based on culture and corporate finance, this course examines differences in corporate governance, financial information, and financial accountability in global settings. This course is a required core course in the MAGAM Program. Prerequisite: None

TGM 503 GLOBAL MARKETING (3 credits)
This course provides a managerial orientation to the topic of global marketing in today’s complex, rapidly changing international business environment. A key focus is developing competitive advantage by creating customer value. Course participants will gain a fundamental understanding of marketing strategy and marketing analysis (i.e., customer, competitor, and company analysis) as well as an appreciation of the basic strategic issues involved in market segmentation, market targeting, and market positioning in the international arena. The major tactics/tools used by global marketers to facilitate the management of their international marketing plans (i.e., product development, pricing strategies, marketing communications, distribution management) are also examined. Throughout the course, an emphasis is placed on developing skills for entering new markets and sustaining or growing current markets. Prerequisites: None

This is an integrative course with two parts;

Part 1) Competitive Strategy: This part focuses on choices that impact the performance of the entire organization. The central questions we examine are:Why are some industries and firms more profitable than others? How do firms create competitive advantage? How does the choice of strategy drive organizational performance? How do firms manage scarce resources in the pursuit of strategic objectives? How do firms create unique and sustainable industry positions?

Part 2) Competing Through People: This part explores the mix of organizational practices and people that can be the basis of sustainable competitive advantage in the contemporary global business environment. Topics covered include cross-cultural issues in managing people; traditional and emerging models of organizations; organizational culture; leadership; employee skills and motivation; reward systems; and change management. Prerequisites: None

Global managers operate in an international economy that presents tremendous opportunities as well as risks. Globalization has dramatically expanded opportunities for international trade, investment, and economic development. At the same time, global managers have to deal with the prospect of trade wars, international financial crises, and intensified competition over markets and resources. In addition, international organizations such as the International Monetary Fund, World Trade Organization and World Bank Group have a direct impact on international business operations. The overall objective of this course is to develop analytical tools for understanding the rapidly changing and dynamic global political. With these tools, managers will be better prepared to anticipate the risks and take advantage of the opportunities they will encounter in the global economy. Prerequisites: None

TGM 506 COMMUNICATING and Negotiating IN A GLOBAL CONTEXT (3 credits)
In a dynamic and interactive format, this course presents a framework of models and skills for building communication performance in competitive global business settings. This course assists you in implementing strategies for mastering interpersonal encounters, including conflict resolution, in multicultural environments. We will not only examine theories of communication, but will place you in experiential situations in which you’ll develop valuable global management skills. Using cases, self-assessment questionnaires, multicultural team exercises and simulations, this course equips the global manager with the ability to solve problems and take advantage of opportunities in a multi-cultural world. Prerequisites: None

TGM 548 GLOBAL STRATEGY (2 credits)
This course focuses on how global firms create value, and covers topics ranging from country specific competitive advantage and the notion of distance, to alternative global strategy archetypes, and sources of competitive advantage for emerging market multinationals. The approach applies multiple decision-making tools and frameworks to untangle the complexities of managing in a global corporation. Prerequisites: TGM 504

TGM 548 GLOBAL STRATEGY (3 credits)
This course focuses on how global firms create value, and covers topics ranging from country specific competitive advantage and the notion of distance, to alternative global strategy archetypes, and sources of competitive advantage for emerging market multinationals. The approach applies multiple decision-making tools and frameworks to untangle the complexities of managing in a global corporation. Prerequisites: TGM 504

This is an introductory preparatory course exploring the profession and practice of organizational consulting in cross-cultural paradigms. The narrow view of consulting is limited to the field of private sector management consulting and those firms that are dedicated to its practice. A broader view acknowledges that mastery of the skills and practices required in planning, executing, and delivering a consulting project is useful to anyone considering a career in management, whether in the private, public, or social sectors while understanding the power dynamics in intercultural interactions. The goal of this course is to provide students with a global introduction to consulting as it is generally practiced across sectors. Students will pursue this goal through a variety of experiential modalities in addition to regular lectures, international case analyses, and class discussions. The experiential modalities will involve group projects, experiential exercises, and simulations. This course builds upon international programs in the core curriculum. Prerequisites: TGM 501, TGM 502, TGM 503, and TGM 504

SGS 501 GLOBAL THEORY (3 credits)
This course examines theoretical and analytical frameworks employed by institutions to frame action related to increased global uncertainty including economic, sociological, psychological, decision theory, gaming, and institutional behavior frameworks. The course will be taught utilizing case studies in key global issue areas such as climate change / natural hazards, energy security, urbanization, food security, failed states, etc. Prerequisites: None

This course examines key types of global institutions, (i) Multi‐national Businesses, e.g., Toyota, (ii) International Governance Organizations, including International Development Organizations, e.g., Bretton Woods’ organizations such as the World Bank, and (iii) Voluntary Organizations, e.g., the Red Cross/Crescent, in terms of the roles that they play in shaping localized decisions and outcomes. Utilizing case studies, the impact of international actors will be explored in terms of power and influence that they exert through international treaties, standards, information diffusion, influence on local governments, communities, and other organizations, dissemination of international “best practice”, etc. Students will be expected to examine the operations of a real world globally oriented organization in detail. Prerequisites: None

The course examines and critically assesses approaches and methods utilized in decision‐making and planning under uncertainty in global contexts, e.g., scenarios, SWOT, risk analysis, contingency planning, gaming, economic forecasting, anticipation‐foresight techniques, decision‐making under complex conditions, and rapid assessment techniques. The course will explore the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches under varying conditions, synergies achievable through application of multiple methodologies, and normative assumptions underlying various methodologies. Students will gain “hands‐on” experience in the use of a variety of techniques through assignments based on real‐world situations. Prerequisites: SGS 501 and SGS 502

This course focuses on the role of the Individual decision‐maker in cross‐cultural contexts, acting in the context of globally engaged institutions. The individual is virtually always embedded in an institutional environment whether as manager, planner, advocate, etc., frequently acting as part of a team. It is recognized that the various agents / stakeholders involved in addressing an issue, negotiating a deal, etc., in a global context, almost invariable hold significantly different worldviews, cultural norms, and decision‐making styles. The course deals with the individual decisionmaker in both public and private decision making milieus. Modes of intervention and initiative will be discussed. Issues of leadership, reconciliation of different decision‐ making modes, and acting effectively in cross‐cultural environments will be addressed. Decision‐making under high uncertainty will be emphasized, utilizing case studies, e.g., pending nationalizations or privatization; abrupt change of government, e.g., coups; natural disasters; economic shocks. Prerequisites: SGS 501 and SGS 502

SGS 505: (6 credits)
This course prepares students for the Global Field Project. In addition to scheduled classes, each student will meet with her/his advisor at regular intervals during the semester to prepare for the Global Field Project (at least once every three weeks). During the semester: (i) Students will identify a project and secure a workplace (host institution) for their Global Field Project, (ii) Prepare a Work Plan which includes objectives, likely issues to be encountered, decision making area(s) to be studied, approach / methodology, and (iii) Identifies specifications of the case study deliverable. An important secondary objective will be network building, and development of an esprit de corps among Global Studies Masters students. Accordingly, the class venue and atmosphere will be conducive to conversation. Prerequisite: SGS 594